English Waltz by Percy Grainger

In Percy Grainger’s own words: “English Waltz reflects to some extent, popular English waltz-types of the 1890’s. some of its phrases are cast in the 5-tone (pentatonic) scale so characteristic of English speaking melody, instead of 7-tone (diatonic) scale more usual in Viennese, German, French, Belgian, Spanish and Russian Waltzes. No folktunes or popular tune-stuffs are used in any part of English Waltz.”

John Bird, the great biographer of Percy Grainger has written this about the suite: “These pieces show a preoccupation with unusual harmonic organisation – for example, there are extended passages of parallel triads and a fondness for closing on added sixth or secondary seventh chords … Apart from the purely academic interest YOUTHFUL SUITE, however, it is mostly appealing work and it is strange that some of the constituent movements have not become favourites with the Promenade audiences. any single piece of the suite’s five movements or any combination thereof could easily be performed in concert, and the multi-metric high-kicking English Waltz makes a wonderful conclusion to this sadly neglected work.”

from the score edited by Mark Rogers